Within a two-week period, Cornell University has received at least five reports of people being drugged or sexually assaulted at fraternities located off-campus, resulting in the suspension of frat parties for the time being.
Cornell’s Interfraternity Council met on Sunday to discuss its next steps, according to university President Martha Pollack and Ryan Lombardi, vice president for student and campus life.
“Like you, we are outraged and saddened by the Cornell University Police Department crime alerts issues this weekend alleging the drugging of at least four students, and sexual assault of another student,” they wrote in a joint statement. “We strongly condemn the actions of all individuals responsible for these criminal violations.
“As a result of these disturbing reports, the IFC, which governs all IFC-recognized fraternities at Cornell, has temporarily suspended all fraternity parties and social events, effective immediately.”
The statement did not reveal the identities of the fraternities or the students involved.
Three days prior to the university’s announcement, the school’s police department issued a statement addressing four incidents that had occurred between Sept. 24 and Nov. 3 “in which students reported to have consumed little to no alcohol at an off-campus location but became incapacitated while attending parties,” according to the statement.
One of the students who came forward reported being exposed to Rohypnol, otherwise known as “roofies,” an illegal substance that dissolves in liquid and has been dubbed the “date rape” drug.
Campus police have advised students to pay attention as their drink is made, cover their drink and never leave it unattended, attend events with a friend, remove themselves from a situation if they feel unsafe, and, as always, call 911 in the event of an emergency.
“Crime is never the fault of those who are victimized,” wrote Pollack and Lombardi. “The university is providing support services to the victims and others impacted by these violations.”